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International Observers 2004
Black America NewsSaturday 8/30/2008
The Failure to Learn From Katrina 8/30/2008 Guardian, UK
A City Still Searches for Recovery - Three Years After Katrina 8/27/2008 Counterpunch
46,000 Fewer Black Voters in New Orleans … Katrina, the Pain Index 8/25/2008 Counterpunch
SCLC: Racism still alive in New Orleans 8/21/2008 Final Call: "While some were caught off guard by his recent description of New Orleans as one of the most racist cities in the United States, he says they shouldn’t have been given the city’s racial climate and its routine mistreatment of Black residents and tourists alike. “We were there before the storm and advocated that racism is still alive and well in New Orleans,” he told The Louisiana Weekly. “You have two different pay scales in New Orleans. We told Mayor (Ray) Nagin this, and the local paper admitted that the SCLC was right. “There are two different market scales within the city of New Orleans,” he continued. “You have a Black price and a White price in terms of the tourism market, which overlaps into the everyday market. You go into a restaurant as a Black person, you get a different menu than White folks.”
Wag the Dog: How to Conceal Massive Economic Collapse 8/14/2008 Global Research
More Evidence of US Complicity in S. Ossetia Invasion 8/10/2008 InfoWars: "Last month, the United States, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Ukraine conducted Immediate Response 2008, a joint training exercise said to be in “spirit of the NATO Partnership for Peace program,” according to Blackanthem Military News. Immediate Response 2008 was held at the Vaziani Military Base in Georgia. In another report, a woman interviewed by Russia Today in Tsknivali, South Ossetia, talked about the presence of Georgian troops with American insignias. “There are lots of bodies over there, a lot of people have been killed, mostly Ossetians, but also Georgians, they had American emblems on their forearms and they were in black uniforms,” she said. Black uniforms are a trademark of Blackwater and DynCorp mercenaries (see Chris Hedges, America’s Holy Warriors)."
Did U.S., Israel Provocateur S. Ossetia Conflict? Does the Sun Come Up in the Morning? 8/9/2008 InfoWars: "Dead civilians in South Ossetia. But you will not hear much about it on CNN or Faux News. Because they are too busy reporting ad nauseam about the extramarital shenanigans of CFR darling John Edwards."
Bo Diddley - Who Do You Love? 8/1/2008 Smithsonian Magazine: "He put the beat front and center. To make that work, he chose the most compelling beat he could: the two-bar rhythm that Cubans know as clave. All the Chicago blues guys dipped into rumba blues, but this was another take on it. The Latin connection was so strong that Bo Diddley used maracas as a basic component of his sound. But sidekick Jerome Green didn't play maracas like a Cuban, and Bo Diddley didn't play that rhythm like a Cuban; he swung it, like an African-American who'd been playing on street corners in Chicago. And Bo Diddley's way of expressing that two-bar feel, known across a wide swath of Africa, was in turn a fountainhead for the development of rock 'n' roll, which would repeatedly cross Afro-Cuban and Af-rican-American rhythmic sensibilities."
The Geopolitics of Iran: Holding the Center of a Mountain Fortress 7/24/2008 Iraq War: By George Friedman - "To understand Iran, you must begin by understanding how large it is. Iran is the 17th largest country in world. It measures 1,684,000 square kilometers. That means that its territory is larger than the combined territories of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and Portugal - Western Europe. Iran is the 16th most populous country in the world, with about 70 million people. Its population is larger than the populations of either France or the United Kingdom. Under the current circumstances, it might be useful to benchmark Iran against Iraq or Afghanistan. Iraq is 433,000 square kilometers, with about 25 million people, so Iran is roughly four times as large and three times as populous."
Rev. Pinkney sentenced to three years in prison for writing an article protected by the First Amendment 7/21/2008 SF Bay View: "After the trial in which my husband, Rev. Edward Pinkney, was convicted by an all-white jury that was motivated by something other than the truth, my husband learned that Judge Alfred Butzbaugh, who presided over the trial, and his law partners and the trust of which he is a beneficiary have been deeply involved in the promotion of Harbor Shores and other development projects in and around the city of Benton Harbor. These are the “land grabs” Rev. Pinkney and others have opposed, leading to the recall election out of which the underlying criminal charges were brought."
Taser death ignites racial tensions 7/19/2008 Chicago Tribune: "At 1:28 p.m. last Jan. 17, Baron "Scooter" Pikes was a healthy 21-year-old man. By 2:07 p.m., he was dead. What happened in the 39 minutes in between — during which Pikes was handcuffed by local police and shocked nine times with a Taser, while reportedly pleading for mercy —is now spawning fears of a political coverup in this backwoods Louisiana lumber town infamous for backroom dealings. Even more ominously, because Pikes was black and the officer who repeatedly Tasered him is white, racial tensions over the case are mounting in a place that's just 40 miles from Jena, La.---site of the racially explosive prosecution of six black teenagers charged with beating a white youth that last year triggered one of the largest American civil rights demonstrations in decades. And in a bizarre coincidence, Pikes turns out to have been a first cousin of Mychal Bell, the lead defendant in the Jena 6 case."
Decline in U. S. Dollar Disrupts Caribbean Economy 7/18/2008 Black Press USA
New evidence collected in 1946 lynching 7/15/2008 Final Call: "State and federal investigators have been gathering evidence in what has been called the last documented mass lynching in the United States: a slaying of four Black people that has remained unsolved for more than 60 years. Several items were collected on a property in rural Walton County, Ga., according to a written statement by the FBI and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Those items were taken in for further examination. The date was July 25, 1946, when two Black sharecropper couples were shot hundreds of times and the unborn baby of one of the women sliced with a knife at Moore’s Ford Bridge. One of the Black men had been accused of stabbing a White man 11 days earlier and was bailed out of jail by a former Ku Klux Klan member who drove the Black man, his wife, her brother and his wife to the site of the lynching… But Rep. Brooks says his group has identified five suspects in the slayings who are still living."
Whites challenge ideas of White supremacy, racism 7/15/2008 Final Call
Blogging While Brown (and Female) 7/12/2008 Women's Media Center: "Advertisers pulled their ads before any reporter had ever written about it," says McCauley. "I don't think anybody had ever won a battle like that with BET before."
For Rangel, Four Rent-Stabilized Apartments 7/11/2008 NYT: "While aggressive evictions are reducing the number of rent-stabilized apartments in New York, Representative Charles B. Rangel is enjoying four of them, including three adjacent units on the 16th floor overlooking Upper Manhattan in a building owned by one of New York’s premier real estate developers."
NC employee refuses to lower flags for late Helms 7/9/2008 AP: "A longtime North Carolina state employee has chosen to retire instead of lowering flags to honor former Sen. Jesse Helms, saying in an e-mail that the late conservative had a "doctrine of negativity, hate and prejudice." U.S. and state flags flew at half-staff on Monday and Tuesday following an order from Gov. Mike Easley. Helms died Friday. L.F. Eason III, director of the state Standards Laboratory - which calibrates equipment for critical measurements such as the weight of medicines or trucks on a highway - told his staff to ignore the directive. He sent workers an e-mail saying he didn't think it was appropriate."
McCain Pushes Colombia Trade Pact 7/3/2008 Consortium News: "Republican presidential candidate John McCain, on a visit to Colombia with top supporters Senators Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman, is a strong supporter of a proposed free trade agreement between the US and Colombia and planned to promote it during his visit."
Bush, Colombia & Narco-Politics 7/3/2008 Consortium News: reprinted from 8/07 - "George W. Bush’s strategy of countering Venezuela’s leftist president Hugo Chávez by strengthening ties to Colombia’s rightist government has been undercut by fresh evidence of high-level drug corruption and human rights violations implicating President Alvaro Uribe’s inner circle."
‘Assassination’ Artist Is Questioned and Released 6/4/2008 NYT: "This morning, a Boston-born performance artist, Yazmany Arboleda, tried to set up a provocative art exhibition in a vacant storefront on West 40th Street in Midtown Manhattan with the title, “The Assassination of Hillary Clinton/The Assassination of Barack Obama,” in neatly stenciled letters on the plate glass windows at street level. By 9:30 a.m., New York City police detectives and Secret Service agents had shut down the exhibition, and building workers had quickly covered over the inflammatory title with large sheets of brown paper and blue masking tape. The gallery is across the street from the southern entrance to The New York Times building. The police officers declined to answer any questions, and at first would not permit reporters to speak with Mr. Arboleda, who was wearing a black T-shirt and making cellphone calls from inside the makeshift gallery."
Rezko begins serving time immediately 6/4/2008 ABC
Hungry for Justice: Modern-Day Slavery in New Orleans 6/2/2008 Common Dreams
Fixers Indicated That Hillary Was a Key Player in the Marc Rich Pardon Deal - Bill Clinton and the Rich Women 5/29/2008 Counterpunch: "Meanwhile, back in Lucerne, Rich was beginning to cultivate the Israeli government. He established the Rich Foundation in Tel Aviv, which would distribute more than $100 million to Israeli causes over the next decade. To oversee the foundation, Rich selected a former high-ranking Mossad official named Avner Azulay, whose ties to the intelligence agency probably never totally evaporated. Azulay was a useful conduit to Israel’s political elite. He was close to Yitzak Rabin, Ehud Barak, Shimon Peres and Ehud Olmert. A decade later, Azulay would play a key role in securing Rich’s pardon from the Clintons. Through Azulay, Rich offered his services to the Israeli government, especially the Mossad. Indeed, according to letters from Israeli officials, Rich played the role of a “Say-Ayon,” or unpaid asset of the Mossad. In fact, Rich was subsidizing Israeli intelligence operations. He financed numerous covert missions and allowed Mossad operatives to work covertly in his offices around the world. With experience as an international spook now added to his C.V., Rich reached out through intermediaries to both the FBI and the CIA. He offered his services to both agencies in exchange for dropping the charges against him. The CIA’s response is unknown, but the FBI was intrigued and sent the request to the Justice Department, where it was quashed."
Neo-Cons Silent on Hagee Repudiation by McCain 5/29/2008 Lobe Log: "Virtually nothing has appeared in the National Review Online, and nothing at all in Bill’s Kristol’s Weekly or Daily Standard. Most remarkably, Commentary’s hyper-active on-line blog, ‘Contentions’ — which, like the other two publications, has been obsessed with Obama and the Rev. Wright — has simply ignored the event, as if it never happened. Is it because any comment at all is seen as too politically risky? Criticizing McCain for so peremptorily rejecting the man who, after all, was the keynote speaker at last year’s AIPAC convention could undermine his courtship of Jewish voters and funders. Agreement with McCain’s decision, on the other hand, could be taken badly by the Christian Right, a strategic ally of the neo-cons since before the 1980 election campaign."
Black, Jewish Crown Heights Leaders Seek Unity 5/23/2008 CBS
O'Reilly critic is fired from job at CN8 5/22/2008 Boston Globe: scroll down, thnis story is buried -- "CN8 host Barry Nolan , who publicly complained a few weeks ago about Bill O'Reilly receiving an award from the Boston chapter of National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, has been fired by the Comcast network. "Their take is that I was insubordinate," Nolan told us yesterday. "They wanted me to sit down and shut up." The host of "Backstage With Barry Nolan" had argued that O'Reilly, the volatile Fox News host and former Channel 7 anchor, was unworthy of the Governor's Award. (Past recipients include the likes of Mike Wallace, Ken Burns, and Natalie Jacobson.) "The idea of honoring someone who does their job with constant factual errors, name-calling, and mangling of the truth . . . It's ridiculous," said Nolan, who's married to Garland Waller, a veteran TV producer who teaches at Boston University. We're told Nolan was warned by his bosses at CN8 to pipe down, but at the May 10 dinner honoring O'Reilly he handed out a six-page document listing some of O'Reilly's wackier errors, utterances, and information about the talk-show host's sexual harassment settlement. Seems Comcast was concerned that Nolan's actions could harm the network's relationships with the academy and Fox. He was immediately suspended without pay for two weeks and then fired over the phone Tuesday."
The Bushes and Hitler's Appeasement 5/18/2008 Consortium News: "If Borah, an isolationist Republican from Idaho, sounded naïve saying “Lord, if only I could have talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided,” then what should be said about Bush’s grandfather and other members of his family providing banking and industrial assistance to the Nazis as they built their war machine in the 1930s? The archival evidence is now clear that Prescott Bush, the president’s grandfather, was a director and shareholder of companies that profited from and collaborated with key financial backers of Nazi Germany. That business relationship continued after Hitler invaded Poland in 1939 and even after Germany declared war on the United States following Japan’s bombing of Pearl Harbor in December 1941. It stopped only when the U.S. government seized assets of Bush-connected companies in late 1942 under the “Trading with the Enemy Act.”
U.N. racism investigator to visit U.S. from Monday 5/16/2008 Reuters: "The United Nations said Doudou Diene would meet federal and local officials, as well as lawmakers and judicial authorities during the May 19-June 6 visit. "The special rapporteur will...gather first-hand information on issues related to racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance," a U.N. statement said on Friday. His three-week visit, at U.S. government invitation, will cover eight cities -- Washington D.C., New York, Chicago, Omaha, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Miami and San Juan, Puerto Rico."
Audio Recording of McCain's Political Endorser John Hagee Preaching Jews Are Cursed and Subhuman 5/15/2008 Talk 2 Action: "Yesterday I discovered an astonishing audio recording of a sermon, by controversial McCain endorser Pastor John Hagee, in which Hagee elaborates on his view that Hitler and the Nazis were divine agents sent by God to (with gruesome inefficiency it would seem) chase Europe's Jews towards Palestine. In his 2006 book "Jerusalem Countdown", Hagee proposed that anti-Semitism, and thus the Holocaust, was the fault of Jews themselves - the result of an age old divine curse incurred by the ancient Hebrews through worshiping idols and passed, down the ages, to all Jews now alive."
EVA GOLINGER - The CIA is more active than ever in Venezuela 5/15/2008 Granma: "If he should be elected president of the United States, McCain would engage in a much more hostile and aggressive policy toward Venezuela and Cuba, and even the other ALBA countries. His discourse is already more precise toward the region and he is constantly mentioning how he would further tighten policy on what he classifies as dictatorships and threats in Venezuela and Cuba. That goes beyond simply wanting the Florida vote. McCain is a military man and an imperialist in the sense that he wouldn’t accept the United States losing its influence over and domination of its "backyard." He suffers from that same complex that the other Republicans have about Cuba and Fidel Castro, for example. They still cannot accept that Cuba has defeated imperial aggression and the 50 years of blockade and attacks. They persist in their spoilt and infantile attitudes that stop them from turning the page and accepting reality: the most powerful empire in the world could not defeat the Cuban Revolution. So, with a McCain, we will be even worse off than with a Bush and, believe me, he is a hard one to surpass."
'Sick' Secret Service emails prompt Jesse Jackson to demand files 5/14/2008 Raw Story: reminiscent of FBI jokes about MLK - ""The Secret Service e-mail, WBBM-TV obtained from a court filing in Washington, was titled 'The Righteous Reverend,' and jokes about the deaths of Jackson and his wife when a missile strikes their plane," the station reports. "The e-mail ends with, it 'certainly wouldn't be a great loss and probably wouldn't be an accident either.'" The report continues, "The one about the Rev. Jackson has now led to a demand for the release of any other insulting references to members of the Jackson family in Secret Service files. More damaging, though, is who sent and received them: top brass, including the former Special Agent in Charge of the Presidential Protective Detail, as well as the Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago field office."
Racist Secret Service E-Mails 5/12/2008 Slate
Cuba: A Music Festival Devoted To Africa 5/6/2008 Cuba Now: "As if to pay an old debt with Africa, the organizers of the 12th Cubadisco International Musical Festival, which will start next May 17, will devote it to the culture in that continent. Ministers and artists from a dozen African nations will travel in Havana for that purpose. Ethnologists like Cuban Rogelio Martinez Fure, honorable president of Cubadisco, believe that the Cuban people do not know Africa as it really is, but instead are familiar with an imagined Africa fabricated by colonizers in the course of time."
U.S. has Mandela on terrorist list 5/1/2008 USA Today
Report: NYPD targets blacks, Hispanics on marijuana 4/29/2008 Newsday: "The NYPD arrested more than 350,000 people for misdemeanor marijuana possession over the past decade -- a tenfold increase achieved by systematically targeting young black and Hispanic men and stopping them without cause, a report released Tuesday charges."
Jeremiah Wright Delivers the Knockout Punch - But Will It Topple Obama? 4/28/2008 Counterpunch
ABC’s ratings drop after much-criticized debate 4/22/2008 Think Progress: "Last week, after ABC News’s much-criticized Democratic debate, Washington Post TV critic Tom Shales declared that “the clear loser is ABC.” The ratings for last week’s evening newscasts are now in, and it appears that Shales was correct: “NBC beat ABC by over 600,000 viewers last week — an unusually wide margin for the dueling newscasts.” Huffington Post’s Rachel Sklar notes that “one reason for that wider-than-usual gap” is that “on Friday, NBC beat ABC by 1.1 million viewers — a practically unheard of margin for an otherwise random Friday night.”
The U.S. Economy and the Costs of War - The Big Hurt 4/21/2008 Counterpunch: "Firstly, even oil traders will acknowledge that there is a premium on oil in part because of the threat to 20 percent of the world’s oil posed by the Bush/Cheney administration’s growing belligerence towards Iran, and its threats to attack the world’s number-two oil producer, a move which would effectively close off the Persian Gulf as an oil-producing venue indefinitely. The Iraq War hasn’t just reduced oil production in Iraq, the world’s third-biggest oil producing nation; it has led to fears of a much wider disruption in oil supplies from Iran, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia--and oil investors make their price decisions based on future prospects, not on current usage. Second, the administration’s obsession with waging a vastly unpopular war has led it to avoid doing anything that might cause the American public to feel pain from that conflict. That would include trying to mandate any kind of reduction in oil demand in the US, by for instance increasing the tax on gasoline, or mandating improved mileage standards for automobiles and trucks. Much of the rise in oil prices, of course, is only being felt by Americans, because it is an increase in the dollar price for oil. For Europeans and Asians, whose currencies are appreciating against the dollar, oil prices are not rising, and may even be falling. So to the extent that the massive US spending on a war funded on credit is contributing to the dollar’s collapse, so is that spending leading to the soaring oil prices that are dragging down the domestic economy."
TODAY'S BLACK EGYPTIANS: 2006 - An Essay through PHOTOS by Kola Boof 4/12/2008 Indiginous People of Africa and America: published 7/07 - "The true Egyptians--the Black Egyptians do still exist, and instead of debating about the "ancient" people....why do we never force the WHITE MEDIA to show images of the black ones? Why is it that in America--only the WHITE ARAB INVADER groups, the BEJA and the Noor are ever shown on television or in magazines?"
U.N. Official Calls for Study Of Neocons' Role in 9/11 4/10/2008 NY Sun: "A new U.N. Human Rights Council official assigned to monitor Israel is calling for an official commission to study the role neoconservatives may have played in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks."
The Keating Five Legacy 4/9/2008 Campaign for America's Future
The Martin Luther King Conspiracy Exposed in Memphis 4/8/2008 Probe Magazine: Published in 2000, recounts the 1999 trial in Memphis which identified various elements of the US government as co-conspirators in the MLK murder.
Uncovering the Coverage 4/8/2008 Acorn: Published in 2000 - "On December 9, 1999, on page A23, next to the weather and the national classified ads, The New York Times reported on the verdict in Memphis. By way of background information, the Times claimed that James Ray confessed to firing the shot that killed Dr. King --- which is not true --- and added a quote from Gerald Posner: "It distresses me greatly that the legal system was used in such a callous and farcical manner in Memphis. If the King family wanted a rubber stamp of their own view of the facts, they got it." With that broad swipe at the King family, the judge, the attorneys, and the jury's verdict, the Times's story closed."
Colombia’s Invasion of the United States - The Uribe Regime Sends an Army of Lobbyists and Infiltrators to Washington to Impose a “Free Trade” Deal 4/8/2008 NarcoNews: "Another top Clinton campaign aide – spokesman Howard Wolfson – is an owner of the Glover Park Group, to which the Colombian government pays a $40,000 per month retainer to lobby for the US-Colombia “free trade” agreement."
Martin Luther King and Civil Rights 4/8/2008 Education Forum: set of threads on MLK, mostly on his assassination.
Colombia’s Uribe Regime Approaches Pariah Status in Washington - The Resignation of Mark Penn as Clinton’s Strategist Reveals a Long Overdue Rejection of a US-Colombia “Free Trade” Agreement 4/7/2008 NarcoNews: "That Uribe singled-out Obama is revealing: the Illinois senator’s rival for the Democratic nomination for president in the United States, Senator Hillary Clinton of New York, also says she opposes the US-Colombia “free trade” pact. That clearly doesn’t worry Uribe: the Clinton organization has a long history of backing – politically and economically – the Colombian far right, its narco-politicians and paramilitary death squads, of whom Uribe is supreme leader. In 2000, then-US president Bill Clinton went on Colombian national TV to announce “Plan Colombia,” the multi-billion dollar US military intervention that keeps Uribe and his repressive regime in power to this day."
Racism in America - UN Report points to "stark racial disparities" in U.S. institutions, including its criminal justice system 4/7/2008 Global Research: "The U.S. is failing to meet international standards on racial equality, according to the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) based in Geneva, Switzerland. Last Friday, after considering the U.S. government's written and oral testimony, the 18- member committee said it has found "stark racial disparities" in the U.S. institutions, including its criminal justice system. The CERD is responsible for monitoring global compliance with the 1969 Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, an international treaty that has been ratified by the United States. In concluding the CERD report on the U.S. record, the panel of experts called for the George W. Bush administration to take effective actions to end racist practices against minorities in the areas of criminal justice, housing, healthcare and education. This is the second time in less than two years that the U.S. government has been found to be falling short of its treaty obligations. In March 2006, The CERD had harshly criticised the U.S. for violating Native Americans' land rights."
A Tale of Two Callahans - The Irish Black Thing 4/7/2008 Counterpunch
Free-trade plan with Colombia likely to cause stir 4/7/2008 Houston Chronicle: "The Bush administration is set to force a vote in Congress this year over the Colombia free-trade agreement, a risky move in a presidential election year with the economy slowing down and voters souring on global trade. People inside and outside the administration expect the deal to be submitted to Congress as early as this week, setting in motion a "fast track" timetable that will require votes by September — just weeks before Election Day. A political fight is assured. The only question is, how bruising will it become?"
Tet Happened, and No One Cared 4/6/2008 NYT: "For the majority of Americans who haven’t met any of the brave troops who’ve been cavalierly tossed into the quagmire, the war is out of sight and mind in a way Vietnam never was. Only 28 percent of Americans knew American casualties in Iraq were nearing 4,000 last month, according to the Pew Research Center. The Project for Excellence in Journalism found that by March 2008 the percentage of prominent news stories that were about Iraq had fallen to about one-fifth of what it was in January 2007. It’s a poignant commentary on the whole war that Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, the nonpartisan advocacy group, was reduced to protesting the lack of coverage. That’s why it’s no surprise that so few stopped to absorb the disastrous six-day battle of Basra that ended last week — a mini-Tet that belied the “success” of the surge. Even fewer noticed that the presumptive Republican nominee seemed at least as oblivious to what was going down as President Bush, no tiny feat."
Monument to the Father of Gynecology and Experimenter on Slave Women 4/6/2008 Roadside America: "Depending on who you believe, James Marion Sims was either a savior of women -- "Father of Gynecology" -- or an inhuman monster. That's because all of his practical experience on female diseases -- the techniques he developed and the instruments he devised -- came from crude experiments on women slaves in Alabama. Some of his patients underwent as many as thirty operations, and Sims, who believed that Africans could tolerate pain, never used anesthesia. When he moved from the Deep South to New York City, he continued his experiments on poor Irish immigrant women. The wealthy upper class benefited from his experience and knowledge, and while it did eventually trickle down to almost everyone, it didn't until long after he was dead."
Has the King Family Been Bamboozled by William Pepper? 4/5/2008 Daily Kos: "Because I admire Martin and Coretta Scott King so much, I feel compelled to do a follow-up while the interest in King's life and death is so high. So today I would like to explore William Pepper, the man who has wormed his way into King's legacy and seems intent on doing irreparable harm to it."
U.S. Native Americans Lead Opposition to Designation of Venezuela as Terrorist Nation 4/4/2008 Indian Country Today: "Members of the Penobscot Indian Nation are spearheading opposition to a congressional resolution that would designate Venezuela as a state sponsor of terrorism. James Sappier, former Penobscot Indian Nation chief, and Erlene Paul, the head of Penobscot's Human Services Department, said House Resolution 1049 threatens not only a program in which the South American country has provided free heating oil to hundreds of American Indian and low-income communities for the past three winters, but would also jeopardize the good relationships tribal members have developed with Venezuelans and could impact oil imports for the entire U.S. Sappier said he has alerted the tribes involved to contact their congressional representatives to vote against the resolution. ...The resolution was introduced March 13 by Florida Republican Reps. Connie Mack and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. It asks the State Department to place Venezuela on a list of countries that provide support to terrorist organizations, a designation that would impose a number of sanctions on Venezuela and U.S. companies and individuals that do business there. Other countries on the list are North Korea, Iran, Syria, Cuba and Sudan."
"Symbolic Racism" and the "US of KKK A" - Hannity, Clinton, Obama, Rev. Wright and "Racism 101": Part Two 4/3/2008 Walter C Uhler: "Take the case of the GI Bill. "Between 1944 and 1971, federal spending on former soldiers in this 'model welfare system' totaled over $95 billion." [p. 113] As Katznelson notes, "with the help of the GI Bill, millions [of veterans] bought homes, attended college, started business ventures, and found jobs commensurate with their skills." [p. 113] Yes, it helped many blacks and should be credited "for developing a tiny group of professionals into the large, stable, and growing 'black bourgeoisie' that exists today, composed of doctors, lawyers, teachers, and mid-level civil servants." [p. 120] But, "on balance, despite the assistance that black soldiers received, there was no greater instrument for widening an already huge racial gap in postwar America than the GI Bill." [p. 121] Soon after the law's enactment, a delegation "told the Veterans Administration…that discharged Negro soldiers in the South are discouraged from enjoying the benefits of the 'GI Bill of Rights." [p. 122] One consequence of this discrimination wouldn't be seen until 1984, when GI Bill mortgages had largely matured. In 1984, "the median white household had a net worth of $39,135; the comparable figure for black households was only $3,397…Most of this difference was accounted for by the absence of homeownership." [p. 164] "
A Conversation with Steven Kinzer - The Folly of Attacking Iran 4/2/2008 Counterpunch: "We can easily foresee some of the terrible consequences of an American attack on Iran. First of all, Iran is the only country in the Muslim Middle East where most people are pro-American. That pro-American sentiment in Iran is a huge strategic asset to the United States. We can build on that for generations to come. We will liquidate that asset in 1 hour if we start to attack. We profess to be great enemies and harsh critics of President Ahmadinejad. He is very unpopular in Iran. He's likely to lose next year's presidential elections. He knows this. There is only one way he can become a hero in Iran and to Muslims all over the world. That is to be attacked by the United States. His provocative rhetoric is kind of calculated to try to bring on this kind of an attack. If we do bomb Iran, we will be strengthening the very regime that we claim to be opposed to. An American attack on Iran would certainly lead Iran to revenge attacks on Israel and on U.S. targets in the Persian Gulf. That will bring Israel into the conflict probably with terrible results, such as bombing attacks on Iran. It would also set off a huge explosion of anti-American violence in Iraq, probably also in Afghanistan. It would greatly destabilize Pakistan, which is probably the last country the U.S. needs to destabilize at this moment. And, if you are afraid today that nuclear scientists in Iran might share their knowledge with terrorists or the Anti-American groups, then just bomb their houses and kill their children and then see how eager they are to participate in anti-American activities."
Max Blumenthal Probes Hannity's History With Talk Radio's 'Angry White Men' -- and Fanning the Flames of Racial Politics 4/1/2008 Buzzflash: "Sean Hannity had had his own problems when he was a broadcaster at the University of Santa Barbara, which is a relatively liberal school in California. He claimed that he was ousted by the left-wing management there, but, in fact, he had repeatedly made vitriolic, homophobic statements on the air, claiming that homosexuality could be "corrected" and that it wasn't a biological phenomenon. So he was ousted. Then he did the right-wing radio circuit in the South, filling in for Neal Boortz, this broadcaster who said Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney looks like a ghetto slut. He's an open racist. Sean Hannity had kind of always been in the shadows of these racist figures. Now finally, he fills in for one of them on WABC, inheriting this big fan base of angry white males, including Hal Turner, who called himself Hal from North Bergen when he called in. What Hannity did was kind of outsource a lot of his racism to Turner. He'd have Turner call in and bash black people, and Hannity wouldn't say anything. And his audience would get a big rise out of it. For example, in August 1998, Hal Turner reminded Hannity that if it wasn't for the graciousness of the white man, black people would still be swinging on trees in Africa. This is something that you would rebuke if you're Sean Hannity and you really are against racism. Instead, Hannity continued taking Hal Turner's calls. In fact, Sean Hannity promoted Hal Turner's candidacy for the U.S. House of Representatives."
Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke on Cuba 3/31/2008 AfroCubaWeb: "Removing the embargo on Cuba would provide and new and valuable market to United States businesses and farmers. I also believe it is in our country’s best interest to promote greater diplomatic ties with Cuba. And Americans, as free citizens, should be able to travel freely, including to Cuba. As such, I cosponsored H.R. 624, the Free Trade with Cuba Act, which would end the trade embargo with Cuba. It is my hope that with the new leadership in Cuba, Congress will address the Cuban embargo issue and usher in a new era in U.S.-Cuba relations."
Iranian general played key role in Iraq cease-fire 3/30/2008 McClatchy: "Iraqi lawmakers traveled to the Iranian holy city of Qom over the weekend to win the support of the commander of Iran's Qods brigades in persuading Shiite cleric Muqtada al Sadr to order his followers to stop military operations, members of the Iraqi parliament said."
Outrage and Controversy at NY Museum Art Show Depicting Police Brutality by Dread Scott 3/29/2008 Alternet: "In my opinion, the police response has done nothing but affirm the themes in the show. What kind of society do you have when cops not only have unrestrained power to shoot unarmed people but then demand that artists and museums that shine the light on these crimes be punished? And in case anyone has any illusions that this is "just" about arts funding, it is revealing to learn how the police speak about this when they think that they are "off the record." Below are some of the responses posted on policelink.com -- a social networking site for police across the country. NYPDLieutenant: (Retired from the NYPD in 2004 as a lieutenant) "The Brooklyn "Museum" should be blown off the face of the earth. It's the most liberal, anti-American, racist spot in the entire city." [etc.]
Dread Scott web site 3/29/2008 dreadscott.net
I INTERNATIONAL MEETING OF AFRODESCENTS WOMEN AND AFROVENEZUELAN FAMILY 3/27/2008 Red Afrovenezolana: "In this context, afrodescendents families are still marked by the consequences of the terrible process of domination that submitted millions of men and women with the European insertion to the coasts of subsaharian Africa and subsequently, the transfer of Africans men and women to the American continent through the Slave Trade that imprisoned then as if it was an inherent condition. This historical process has been transmitted for a long time to diverse generations, excluding a lot of their cultural, economic, spiritual, social and political contribution to the development and of the Americas and the Caribbean. In our society we still have the established idea of a supposed “inferiority” imposed by a dominant social system, which has marked the conscience of afrodescendents and not-afrodescendents, maintaining thus a society where racism, racial discrimination and endorracism are intermingled silently, to become an obstacle of the development and enjoyment of the full rights of men and women, these last resulting the most affected in the three dimensions of a class, racist and sexist system. Nevertheless, the afrodescendent family has contributed in the construction of more human relations through the inherited values, customs, traditions and ancient knowledge. The Network of Afrovenezuelans Organizations and the Cumbe of Afrodescendents Women, opens an space with this meeting in the need to favor an analysis and debate of the situation of afrodescendent families in Venezuela, Latin America and the Caribbean, designing alternatives and discussions on the ways of conducting an appropriate development to improve life quality and question an exclusive sociopolitical system. In times of revolution, the real participatory democracy is consolidated only once inclusion of all society sectors is realized and the enjoyment of equity of opportunities and conditions."
Hannity, Clinton, Obama, Rev. Wright and "Racism 101" 3/27/2008 Walter C Uhler: "Finally, before the three of you persist in your respective hate-mongering, racial triangulation and political retreat, consider the immortal words that Thomas Jefferson wrote about the morally debilitating impact of slavery: "Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that his justice cannot sleep for ever . . .." Wasn't Thomas Jefferson suggesting that a just God would damn America?"
[Black] Teenager Dies After Police In Charlotte Use Taser 3/24/2008 WSOC TV
Sean Hannity Confronted Over His Relationship With Neo-Nazi Hal Turner 3/23/2008 Huffington Post: "The folks over at NewsHounds have been watching their Fox News Channel quarry dither over Senator Barack Obama's associations with pastor Jeremiah Wright, and noted Fox's own Sean Hannity getting himself tripped up in the guilt-by-association tango. Seems that one of Hannity's former close chums is a neo-Nazi named Hal Turner who used to be a radio host, is apparently the top man in Bergen, NJ white-supremacist circles, and probably spends a lot of his time in his basement with Star Wars action figures acting out Holocaust-denier versions of The Return of the Jedi. In short, just the sort of person with whom you'd imagine Sean Hannity spends a lot of formational time with."
America's New Racial Reality: White Minority Status 3/22/2008 Alternet: "In stark contrast to Obama's strive-for-higher-ground idealism is the boots-on-the-ground march of the pre-eminent practitioners of racial realpolitik: the Clinton backers of Washington's Democratic Leadership Council (DLC). Caught between the current reality of an electorate that's still mostly white and a primary process that reflects stunning demographic shifts, the racial politics of the Clinton supporters in the DLC reflect a strategic decision to consolidate their white base. Viewed from this vantage point, the DLC's re-engineered appeals to white racial solidarity preview the new politics of the white minority era that looms on the racial horizon."
U.S. contractor under fire for Katrina jobs Mississippi fines Florida firm for ‘negligence,’ weighs criminal probe 3/21/2008 MS NBC
New Jersey: March demands reparations for African Americans 3/19/2008 Fight Back News: published 2/08 - " “Forty acres and a mule!” and “You stole us. You sold us. You owe us.” chanted here, Feb. 23, demanding reparations for African American people. The march was sponsored by the People’s Organization for Progress (POP) and the New Black Panther Party. The first chant refers to Field Order 15 issued by General W.T. Sherman in 1865. The intent was to furnish a livelihood to Black freedmen after the end of slavery. Sherman’s field order was the first attempt to give reparations to the victims of slavery. It was never successfully implemented."
The Iraq War Is Killing Our Economy 3/19/2008 Alternet: "But the economic consequences of Iraq run even deeper than the squandered opportunities for vital public investments. Spending on Iraq is also a job killer. Every $1 billion spent on a combination of education, healthcare, energy conservation and infrastructure investments creates between 50 and 100 percent more jobs than the same money going to Iraq. Taking the 2007 Iraq budget of $138 billion, this means that upward of 1 million jobs were lost because the Bush Administration chose the Iraq sinkhole over public investment."
Peter Dale Scott, Transcript of Talk, Santa Cruz Media Strategy Summit 3/13/2008 Education Forum: talk given 1/26/08 - "Another thing is that, and I go into this in my book, around about the year 1970, the right wing of the overworld of this society decided that they were actually threatened by blacks in the streets and SDS and everything else and mobilized for what Irving Kristol called an "intellectual counterrevolution." Which meant they systematically channeled money into the big four foundations, like the Richard Mellon Scaife Foundation, which have been funding the radical right, theocons, all of these things have been systematically funded. And money after all, does have an impact in the country. And what is even worse since Iraq, and it started with Cheney when he was Secretary of Defense in 1982, the right wing developed this theory that there were too many public civil servants because these tended to vote Democratic, so they started outsourcing to private contractors. And that has certainly redressed the balance in the opposite direction. Because firms like Haliburton or Blackwater go to Iraq with huge non-bid contracts; Halliburton channels 87 % of its political contributions to the Republican Party; Blackwater is channeling its political contributions to the radical Christian right wing. So that it's the public treasury that is funding these private outsourced contractors, who then, in turn, are financing the political machine that has given them these contracts in the first place."
Washington Post Columnist Gives Private AIPAC Talks on How to Help Israel in '08 Election 3/12/2008 Mondoweiss
How to End the Subprime Crisis 3/11/2008 Counterpunch: "But at the heart of the problem is a 1999 “reform” that repealed an earlier reform known as the Glass-Steagall Act. In 1933 the Glass-Steagall Act separated commercial banking from the securities business. It prevented securities speculation from destroying bank capital and shrinking bank deposits from bank failures and runs on banks by depositors. Congress and President Bill Clinton foolishly repealed the Glass-Steagall Act in 1999."
James Brown's Gate 3/8/2008 Counterpunch: "Lucas’s fascinating, well-researched story has broader significance, too. How many other liberal outfits which on the surface appear to behelping philanthropies or public benefits, are secretly funded and used bythe wealthy and the political establishment, sometimes even unknowingly, tokeep an eye out for—and control, if necessary— rabble rousers? Or have such subtle forms of intelligence gathering gone into the dustbin of history now that corporations and government agencies have easy access to everybody’s communications?"
Half the City's Poor Now Permanently Displaced - The Cleansing of New Orleans 3/4/2008 Counterpunch: "Government reports confirm that half of the working poor, elderly and disabled who lived in New Orleans before Katrina have not returned. Because of critical shortages in low cost housing, few now expect tens of thousands of poor and working people to ever be able to return home. The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) reports Medicaid, medical assistance for aged, blind, disabled and low-wage working families, is down 46% from pre-Katrina levels. DHH reports before Katrina there were 134,249 people in New Orleans on Medicaid. February 2008 reports show participation down to 72,211 (a loss of 62,038 since Katrina). Medicaid is down dramatically in every category: by 50% for the aged, 53% for blind, 48% for the disabled and 52% for children."
Oil money is coming - and there is little the west can do about it 3/1/2008 Guardian: "A study by one of the biggest banks, HSBC, noted: "The owners of emerging SWFs look unlikely just to roll over. They are enjoying the boot being on the other foot after an awfully long time. The train wreck that was the 1990s, when they had to go cap-in-hand to the developed world, was bad enough. "Going back further, western jibes about state capitalism would, perhaps, have more power had they themselves not ruled many of these countries for years via state-licensed companies." Gerard Lyons, chief economist at Standard Chartered, said: "Sovereign wealth funds have existed since 1953 and are here to stay. Their size and influence is set to grow. Already valued at $2.2tn, on current trends they could reach $13.4tn in a decade. "There is a serious likelihood of western governments and SWFs clashing over what they can buy and where. A protectionist backlash against strategic investments is real and threatens global trade." "
Economist Stiglitz Says Iraq War Costs May Reach $5 Trillion 3/1/2008 Bloomberg: "Bills from the Iraq war will pile up for decades to come as the government spends hundreds of billions of dollars providing medical care and disability benefits to about 70,000 soldiers injured in the conflict, he said. The government also will have to pay back with interest money it borrowed to finance the war, which will drive total costs higher, he told Congress's Joint Economic Committee earlier this week. The Congressional Budget Office said last month that $752 billion will have been appropriated so far for the Iraq war, the conflict in Afghanistan and other activities associated with the war on terror once lawmakers approve the remainder of President George W. Bush's 2008 war-funding request. The administration's request for $70 billion more for fiscal 2009 would push that past $800 billion."
Bush Bombs UN with Mass Deception About Police Brutality - Cop Abuse in America 2/29/2008 Counterpunch
The Black right wing’s agenda in Colombia 2/29/2008 AfroCubaWeb: by Jesus “Chucho” Garcia
The Farrakhan Distraction 2/29/2008 Alternet: "People watching the Democratic primary debate on Tuesday may not have heard about Farrakhan's speech two days earlier at the annual Nation of Islam convention and his strong words of praise for Obama, and few would have considered its impact. But co-moderator and NBC Washington Bureau Chief Tim Russert spelled it out quite clearly. Russert's repeated questioning of Obama on the endorsement and his relationship to Farrakhan was felt by many to constitute the debate's most cringe-worthy moment. If Russert had moved on after his initial question about Obama's relationship with Farrakhan, that would have been standard fare. But he didn't. Since Obama answered Russert's initial question in unequivocal terms -- strongly denouncing Farrakhan's support -- Russert's repeated attempts to establish a linkage between the two men should be seen as baiting."
The Bonds That Kill - Obama and Israel 2/29/2008 Counterpunch
The Three Trillion Dollar War: Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz and Harvard Economist Linda Bilmes on the True Cost of the US Invasion and Occupation of Iraq 2/29/2008 Democracy Now: "JUAN GONZALEZ: And those deficits, the financing came increasingly from abroad, right? JOSEPH STIGLITZ: Very much so, at least 40 percent from abroad. So that means that Americans will be paying those abroad interest and—the other aspect of that that’s really important to realize is that while we were saving zero, or household saving went down to zero, the government had negative saving and we were borrowing, the pools of wealth that were being created were in the Middle East, China. So when we have an economic problem, like the fact that Citibank and Merrill Lynch had to be bailed out, they had to turn to these others, to the sovereign wealth funds that were held by other countries, and that makes us more dependent on abroad."
Why Afro-Colombians Oppose the Colombia Free Trade Agreement 2/29/2008 AfroCubaWeb: by Marino Cordoba, founder of the Association of Internally Displaced Afro-Colombians (AFRODES) - "Colombia, South America is an important for African North Americans and other allies. Afro-Colombians comprise almost 40% of the Colombian population of around 42 million people. These Afro-Colombians are treated brutally by the Government and the Euro-Colombians. Now, the Colombian President Uribe needs the support of the Congressional Black Caucus to pass the Colombian Free Trade Agreement. So he accepts the proposal of some Afro-Colombians to create this phony Commission for the Protection of the 16 million Afro-Colombians. More than a million Afro-Colombians have been displaced from their homes and communities. Afro-Colombians are killed and forced into exile if they resist the sale their land. The Colombian government provides very few services and infrastructure for the Afro-Colombian community and Law 70 that gives Afro-Colombian rights to their ancestral lands is not implemented and the para-militaries under President Uribe is driving the Afro-Colombians from their land. Congressional Black Caucus member Gregory Meeks of New York and member of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) deceived Congressman Bobby Rush of Chicago and caused him to write a letter of support for the Colombia Free Trade Agreement and have it signed by members of the Congressional Black Caucus."
NOTICE AND ORDER TO CEASE AND DESIST 2/28/2008 Washitaw de Dugdahmoundyah Empire International: "Whereas the most inferior of the Indigenous Emperial Washitaw Court is superior to the supreme court and the Supreme Court of the corporate United States and Whereas the corporate United States and its subsidiaries the corporate States and Commonwealths; and their subsidiaries the corporate Counties, Parishes, etc.; and their subsidiaries the corporate Cities, Towns, Townships, Villages, etc., etc.: and Whereas none of the aforementioned entities, legal fictions, privately held corporations own any land nor do they have any jurisdiction whatsoever (including but not limited to Martial Rule, Martial Law, Maritime Rule, Maritime Law, Admiralty Rule, Admiralty Law) over any private property/lands owned by indigenous people and Whereas the Floridae Province, Empire Washitaw de Dugdamoundyah (which includes the "area" mis-known and fraudulently misrepresented as "Florida") is and has been for 11,500 plus years been the wholly owned land/private property of the hereditary Empresses of the Washitaw de Dugdahmoundyah Empire; and Whereas the foreign privately owned corporate United States and its corporate subsidiaries are illegally and unLawfully operating on lands/private property owned by Her Emperial Highness, the Empress of the Emperial Washitaw Nation and within the borders of the Empire Washitaw de Dugdahmoundyah in direct violation of their own corporate regulations a/k/a "statutes" and "laws;" "
The $3 Trillion War 2/28/2008 Vanity Fair: "For fiscal year 2008 the administration has asked for nearly $200 billion to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. If Congress provides the money, as it almost certainly will, then the total appropriated for direct operations in these two countries (including reconstruction, embassy costs, enhanced base security, and foreign aid) since the wars began will come to roughly $800 billion. It is extremely difficult to disentangle the Iraq and Afghanistan numbers, but Iraq is by far the larger endeavor and accounts for about three-fourths of the total. By the administration’s own reckoning, then, the cost of the Iraq war, counting only the money officially appropriated, will soon be some $600 billion, or more than 10 times Rumsfeld’s original number. The administration’s estimates have been low—and wrong—from the start. Some of this is the result of its shortsightedness about every aspect of the war, beginning with its nature and duration. For instance, extensive use of reservists and the National Guard avoided the need to increase the size of the armed forces or resort to a draft—but at a heavy price, including reliance on highly paid contractors, people who in other contexts would have been called mercenaries. Another factor is the soaring price of fuel caused by the increase in the price of oil—which is itself, in part, a consequence of the war. But even the $600 billion number is disingenuous—which is to say false. The true cost of the war in Iraq, according to our calculations, will, by the time America has extricated itself, exceed $3 trillion. And this is a deliberately conservative estimate. The ultimate cost may well be much higher."
Washita 2/28/2008 Verdiacee ‘Tiara’ Washitaw-Turner Gosten El-Bey: resources
John Hanson, American Patriot and First President of the United States (1715-1783) 2/28/2008 Marshall Hall
Seize moment in Cuba to change U.S. policy 2/27/2008 Oakland Tribune: by Congresswoman Barbara Lee - "On a visit to Cuba in January 2000 with other members of the Congressional Black Caucus, I reached out to Cuba's government to create a program to provide free scholarships for American students to attend the Latin American Medical School in Cuba in exchange for a commitment by the students to work in medically-underserved communities in the U.S. We achieved this without spending a single dime of our tax dollars. Today over 100 students are enrolled at the medical school in Cuba. The success and growth of this scholarship program will also have a tremendous impact on the perceptions of countless Cuban people who will receive free medical care at the hands of American medical students and these students will share their understanding of the Cuban people when they return to fulfill their commitment here at home."
Candidates advised on Latin America 2/26/2008 Miami Herald: "The Clinton and Obama scripts on Latin America appear similar. Both oppose ratifying a free trade agreement with Colombia for now and support a comprehensive overhaul of immigration laws that would legalize millions of undocumented migrants. On Cuba, both favor easing restrictions on family travel but condition most concessions on Havana first enacting democratic reforms. Unlike Clinton, Obama has said he would be open to a dialogue with U.S. foes like Cuba. He also has criticized Chávez for ''despotic tendencies'' and using oil revenues ``to stir up trouble.''"
Brzezinski Seizing Control Over US Policy In Slow-Motion Coup 2/23/2008 Rense: "Events of the past few days indicate that the Zbigniew Brzezinski faction of lunatic Russia haters have now won the upper hand inside the secret councils of the Anglo-American finance oligarchy, displacing the hitherto dominant George Shultz-neocon faction. Although George Bush and his cronies still occupy the White House, the policies that are being carried out are coming from the Brzezinski left CIA machine. Brzezinski has returned to public prominence in recent months due to his role as top establishment controller for the Obama campaign. But Brzezinski is not waiting for the outcome of the November elections to take over key parts of the US government. Brzezinski and his left CIA allies are already moving to assert their strategy, even as the neocons and their characteristic obsessions are moved to the back burner. The probability of an attack on Iran or Syria is declining, even as the danger of confrontation with Russia, China, and Pakistan all much more dangerous targets to trifle with increases exponentially."
The three trillion dollar war - The cost of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts have grown to staggering proportions 2/23/2008 London Times: "As the fifth year of the war draws to a close, operating costs (spending on the war itself, what you might call “running expenses”) for 2008 are projected to exceed $12.5 billion a month for Iraq alone, up from $4.4 billion in 2003, and with Afghanistan the total is $16 billion a month. Sixteen billion dollars is equal to the annual budget of the United Nations, or of all but 13 of the US states. Even so, it does not include the $500 billion we already spend per year on the regular expenses of the Defence Department. Nor does it include other hidden expenditures, such as intelligence gathering, or funds mixed in with the budgets of other departments."
Neo-Nazis and White Supremacists Publish Ominous Threats to Obama's Life 2/22/2008 Alternet
Framing Muslims and Locking Up Their Money 2/20/2008 Black Agenda Report: by Cynthia McKinney
More On Martial Law and Mass Detentions Plans 2/16/2008 Dennis Loo: [published 2/7/07] - "In '1970 he [Louis Giuffrida, Reagan's FEMA Director] had written a paper for the Army War College in which he called for martial law in case of a national uprising by black militants. Among his ideas were "assembly centers or relocation camps" for at least 21 million "American Negroes,"'writes Sam Smith. 'During 1968 and 1972, Reagan ran a series of war games in California called Cable Splicer, which involved the Guard, state and local police, and the US Sixth Army. Details of this operation were reported in 1975 in a story by Ron Ridenour of the New Times, an Arizona alternative paper, and later exhumed by Dave Lindorff in the Village Voice…. Cable Splicer, it turned out, was a training exercise for martial law. The man in charge was none other than Edwin Meese, then Reagan’s executive secretary. At one point, Meese told the Cable Splicer combatants: This is an operation, this is an exercise, this is an objective which is going forward because in the long run … it is the only way that will be able to prevail [against anti-war protests].'"
Putin vs. Clinton 2/15/2008 Politico - Ben Smith: "The former KGB lieutenant colonel appeared to lash out at U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton — a leading Democratic candidate for president — when one reporter quoted her as saying that former KGB officers have no soul: "At a minimum, a head of state should have a head," Putin said."
The war and the recession: a connection? 2/14/2008 Nieman Watchdog: [by Lieutenant General William E. Odom, U.S. Army (Ret.), a Senior Fellow with Hudson Institute and a professor at Yale University. He was Director of the National Security Agency from 1985 to 1988.] "The costs of war in Iraq are certainly part of the answer. Yet the media, having largely pulled back from what used to be aggressive war coverage, have now let the economy replace the war as the number one issue in the presidential campaign without even considering that the two may be connected. Similarly, the Democratic congress has shed the war issue and wrapped itself in the economy issue. (If the Democrats don't press the war as an issue and the press doesn't either, it's only natural that it will recede in the political campaign.) But the two issues are linked. Withdrawing from Iraq will not turn the economy around, but the billions of dollars that would be saved could certainly defray the cost of an economic stimulus package, lessening the likelihood of ensuing inflation. Accurate assessments of the war’s cost are not available, but the figure is most likely between a trillion and one and a half trillion dollars. What if that money were available for dealing with health care demands, public infrastructure underfunding, and the like? To talk about recession without tying it to the war is to give the administration a pass."
Key Clinton Backer Guilty in Sibel Edmonds Case 2/13/2008 OpEd News: "Celebi, "one of the national leaders of the Turkish-American community in the US," is a key fundraiser for Clinton, and is one of Clinton's Chicago delegates to the 2008 Democratic National Convention. Celebi was also heavily involved in the controversial 2006 movie "Valley of the Wolves: Iraq" which has been widely regarded as "anti-Semitic, anti-American, conspiratorial agitprop." Mehmet Celebi is also a key figure in the Sibel Edmonds case - he is heavily involved in the narcotics trade in the US and the corruption and bribery of high-level US officials."
Barack Obama And The “End” Of Racism 2/12/2008 Countercurrents: "With respect to Black interests, Obama would be a silenced Black ruler: A muzzled Black emperor. A Black man at the head of the White Amerikkkan State – one who’s unwilling to speak truth to power, but more than willing, like a Condi Rice or a Colin Powell, to become that power and to launch wars of aggression against other people of color. In Obama’s case the targets will be Iran (which he has threatened with “surgical” missile strikes) and Pakistan, rather than Iraq. That’s the only difference between Obama and Rice and Powell, or Bush, for that matter. Even ABC News notes that “Obama, one of the more liberal candidates in the race, is proposing a geopolitical posture that is more aggressive than that of President Bush.”"
Me in New York Post's PAGE SIX - Why Are Hillary, Lib Jews Lying About Anti-Semitic Filmmaker, Hillary Fundraiser? 2/11/2008 Debbie Schlussel: "I'm quoted in today's New York Post on the PAGE SIX, regarding Turkish Muslim Mehmet Celebi, Hillary Rodham Cankles Clinton's anti-Semitic filmmaking fundraiser and delegate. Gateway Pundit Broke the story that Celebi was a key figure in the Hillary campaign and designated as a Hillraiser. I had written a lot about the film Celebi helped make, the anti-Semitic, anti-American "Kurtlar Vadisi-Irak," which rehearses old blood libels against Jews (which in the past have been used as an excuse to murder Jews en masse)."
ODD FILM BY HILLARY BACKER 2/11/2008 NY Post: "SEN. Hillary Clinton has gotten cozy with a Turkish-born businessman whom some have described as anti-Semitic. Clinton's campaign Web site identifies Mehmet Celebi as one of her "HillRaisers" - someone who has raised at least $100,000 for her presidential bid. This despite Celebi's controversial producing credit on "Valley of the Wolves: Iraq" - a 2006 movie that depicted a Jewish doctor removing the vital organs of civilian prisoners to sell to wealthy transplant patients overseas."
Anti-War Group Collapses 2/9/2008 The Nation: "Tom Mattzie, leader of Americas most well-financed anti-Iraq organization, has resigned his position and dissolved the organization, Americans Against Escalation in Iraq."
AP Poll: Leaving Iraq will help economy - Stimulus Checks Welcome, but to Really Help the Economy US Should Leave Iraq 2/8/2008 AP: "Pulling out of the war ranked first among proposed remedies in the survey, followed by spending more on domestic programs, cutting taxes and, at the bottom end, giving rebates to poor people in hopes they'll spend the economy into recovery."
Shocker!... Clinton Holocaust Denying "Hillraiser" Is Producer of Virulent Anti-Semitic, Anti-American Film 2/6/2008 Gateway Pundit: "Valley of the Wolves Iraq" was an anti-Semitic, anti-American film featuring American actor Gary Busey as a Jewish U.S. army doctor who cuts out the organs of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib and sells them to wealthy foreign clients."
Bill Clinton: Pimp Daddy President 2/4/2008 NNPA: "Bill Clinton's disgraceful behavior on the presidential campaign has prompted a long overdue re-examination of his record, a record that better qualifies him to be called, in the words of one critic, the Pimp Daddy Prez, not the first Black president."
Hillary Clinton, Lafarge, and Kennametal 2/3/2008 Onashi: published 11/96 - "Hillary Clinton, while one of the chief litigators of the Rose law firm and wife of Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton, was a director of Lafarge corporation, whose Marblehead, Ohio subsidiary Standard Lafarge is said to have been utilized in the transport network to ferret machine tools and nose cones out of Pittsburgh and into Canada for shipment to Iraq."
Haunted By Spirits 2/3/2008 Phoenix New Times: published 2/17/00 - "John McCain derived his wealth from his marriage to Cindy Hensley McCain, whose father started his road to riches as a bootlegger. As a politician, the senator has remained beholden to the liquor industry and the family business."
An Interview with Imam Zaid Shakir - Hillary, Obama and the Clash of Civilizations 2/2/2008 Counterpunch: "Imam Zaid Shakir, an African American convert to Islam and one of the most influential and popular Muslim American religious scholars, commands a rock star following: legions of enthralled and inspired Muslims filling rooms to standing only capacity waiting to hear his words. It represents a fascinating and dynamic phenomenon illuminating the resurgent identity of an educated, spiritual, religious and political Muslim American identity emerging from the post 9-11 era. Shakir, a student of the civil rights era and an educated scholar of political science and traditional Islamic jurisprudence, casually interjects tidbits of political theory, economic reform, critical race theory, Arabic, traditional Islamic philosophy and religious didacticism within his rhetoric."
Snipes Acquitted of Tax Fraud 2/1/2008 AP: "Snipes, who starred in the "Blade" films and "White Men Can't Jump," is among the most famous targets of an IRS criminal investigation, and his prosecution was key for the government. The actor used tax protest arguments long rejected by courts but still continuing to find adherents. For example, Snipes said the IRS's own code meant no citizen had to pay taxes on income earned in this country, and the agency had no legal authority to collect wages anyway, because it is not a proper government entity."
From Hillary's Whitewater Deal to Bill's Uranium Mine to Obama's Ba'athist Ties - Hot Democratic Properties by Alexander Cockburn 2/1/2008 Counterpunch: "At the time of the 2005 transaction Rezko's legal problems had already surfaced and Obama told the Sun-Times that involving Rezko "was a mistake". Rezko is now under indictment by US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald (Scooter Libby's special prosecutor). He faces trial in federal court on February 25. On January 29 a federal judge, Amy J. St Eve, ordered Rezko held behind bars for violating the terms of his bail and for being a flight risk. Though, as part of his bail terms, Rezko was required by the court to disclose any changes in his financial status the FBI, using a "cooperating individual" identified only as "C14", claims to have established that Rezko did not reveal that in April, 2007, he appeared to have been the beneficiary of a $3.5 million wire transfer from General Mediterranean Holding S.A., a company run by a business associate of Rezko's, N. Auchi. General Meditarranean has been partner with Rezko in a 62-acre property deal in Chicago. Nadhmi Auchi lives in the U.K.,is extremely rich and politically well connected. In November 2003 he was the subject of unsparing criticism by Nick Cohen in The Observer. Cohen claimed that: He was charged in the 1950s with being an accomplice of Saddam Hussein, when the future tyrant was acquiring his taste for blood ... One reason why journalists have shied away from Auchi is that he has expensive lawyers. They have always denied that their client had met Saddam. No one has been able to contradict them, but we do know that Auchi was charged with being a plotter for the Baath Party as it prepared to seize power. In October 1959 he stood trial for conspiring to assassinate the Iraqi Prime Minister, Abdul Karim Qasim. The attempted murder became a revered part of Saddam's cult of personality ... In 1959 Auchi admitted to playing a minor part in the drama. The conspirators had collected a machine gun from his house before the attack, he said, but he had not used the weapon and knew nothing of what was being planned. Auchi prospered when the Baath Party seized control of the state. When Saddam assumed total power he moved to Britain ... the execution [of his brother] did not inhibit Auchi's business dealings with Iraq which, he says, didn't stop until the Gulf war of 1991. His first coup in the West was to broker a deal to sell Italian frigates to the Iraqi Defence Ministry, for which he received $17m in commission. Italian investigators claimed that a Panamanian company owned by Auchi was used to funnel allegedly illegal payments. Auchi denied he had done anything wrong. The Observer's website featuring Cohen's story also supplies a link to a statement in which Auchi's lawyers say their client "was never close to Saddam Hussein or his regime. He never met or even spoke to Saddam Hussein. Mr Auchi has never to his knowledge had any involvement in money stolen by Saddam Hussein and/or Colonel Gadaffi and he has never sheltered funds for Saddam Hussein. During the time when Iraq was considered to be a friend of the west, Mr Auchi conducted business with entities in Iraq. On sanctions being imposed against Saddam Hussein's regime, Mr Auchi ceased conducting such business." Cohen says that in the fall of 2003 Auchi "was convicted of illicit profiteering by the Paris Criminal Court and received a 15-month suspended sentence." Obama is certainly aware that Rezko is a political liability. Thus far the most tangible benefit from his association unearthed by reporters has been some $50-60,000 in campaign contributions from Rezco down the years (Obama's estimate) plus the adjacent-lot property deal in Kenwood which does smell. One inference back in 2005 might have been that Rezko would finally have conveyed the undeveloped lot to Obama in some manner advantageous to the senator. Apparently Obama scented peril as the spotlight came on his association with Rezko and had a substantial fence (which Rezko promised to pay for) erected between the two parcels. The Rezko parcel is supposedly scheduled for a house. In terms of political mudslinging, if Obama continues to prosper politically this year, we can expect ongoing probes for political favors he might have done for Rezko down the years. For the political hit squads the money shot, so to speak, is any headline that links Barack Hussein Obama with an Iraqi millionaire not only linked to the oil-for-food scandal but to the Baath Party and to Saddam Hussein."
Alexander Cockburn: The Left's Global Warming Denier 2/1/2008 Huffington Post: published 3/21/07
Alexander Cockburn co-editor of Counterpunch ridicules investigations into 9/11 complicity, the assassination of President Kennedy, global warming and vote fraud in the 2004 Presidential election 2/1/2008 Oil Empire: published 2/8/07 -- Alexander Cockburn authored the piece in Counterpunch attacking Obama for being linked to a Saddam backer.
Is Nick Cohen right about the left? His critics reply 2/1/2008 Observer: published 1/28/07 -- Nick Cohen charges off against islamofascism, he is also the author of a piece on Nadhmi Auchi used in the Counterpunch attack job on Obama.
The politics of sleaze 2/1/2008 Observer: published 11/16/03, used in today's Counterpunch piece alleging that Obama had ties through the Chicago real estate mogul Rezko with a wealthy Iraqui, Nadhmi Auchi, who was one of Saddam's supporters.
An Ex-President, a Mining Deal and a Big Donor 1/31/2008 NYT: "Mr. Nazarbayev walked away from the table with a propaganda coup, after Mr. Clinton expressed enthusiastic support for the Kazakh leader’s bid to head an international organization that monitors elections and supports democracy. Mr. Clinton’s public declaration undercut both American foreign policy and sharp criticism of Kazakhstan’s poor human rights record by, among others, Mr. Clinton’s wife, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York. Within two days, corporate records show that Mr. Giustra also came up a winner when his company signed preliminary agreements giving it the right to buy into three uranium projects controlled by Kazakhstan’s state-owned uranium agency, Kazatomprom. The monster deal stunned the mining industry, turning an unknown shell company into one of the world’s largest uranium producers in a transaction ultimately worth tens of millions of dollars to Mr. Giustra, analysts said. Just months after the Kazakh pact was finalized, Mr. Clinton’s charitable foundation received its own windfall: a $31.3 million donation from Mr. Giustra that had remained a secret until he acknowledged it last month. The gift, combined with Mr. Giustra’s more recent and public pledge to give the William J. Clinton Foundation an additional $100 million, secured Mr. Giustra a place in Mr. Clinton’s inner circle, an exclusive club of wealthy entrepreneurs in which friendship with the former president has its privileges."
Defeat Without End - 'Why is our economy tanking? The war, the war, the war' 1/31/2008 Common Wonders: "Consider the number 72,000. This number — of total U.S. battlefield casualties in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, through Jan. 5, 2008 — is simple enough, but as I ponder the fact that Paul Sullivan and his organization, Veterans for Common Sense, had to wrest it from the Department of Defense with a Freedom of Information Act request, and the fact that the only media outlet to pick up on it so far is the Scottish newspaper The Herald, I begin to grasp the extent of the deception in place sustaining the war on terror. The reason that the casualty totals reported are far lower, Sullivan explained to me, is that the Defense Department releases the stats on only one category of battlefield casualty to the media, the number of GIs “wounded” in action, that is, harmed by the instrumentation of war: bullet, shrapnel or knife. A GI who cracks his head on the windshield of his Humvee in a crash, though he may have suffered brain damage and had to be evacuated from the battlefield, is considered “injured,” not “wounded,” Sullivan explained, and thus doesn’t show up in the figure the DoD releases and the media misleadingly report. Likewise, a GI who suffers a heart attack, or, let’s say, one of those desert mystery illnesses, or a severe emotional collapse, is “ill,” not “wounded,” and is also MIA from the official casualty count. And in this way does the war remain a tad more statistically palatable to a distracted public. “This administration has a concerted plan to conceal the human and financial costs of these two wars to maintain public support,” said Sullivan, a Gulf War 1 vet and former Veterans Administration project manager who was blowing the whistle on the shoddy quality of vets’ health care long before the Washington Post “broke” the Walter Reed scandal a year ago. “There are some in the VA — top political appointees — who are fundamentally opposed to providing health care to vets,” Sullivan went on, talking about the deeper deceptions of the war on terror that keep the political debate focused on vague future “consequences of failure” rather than the present-day consequences of a criminally inept, shoot-from-the-hip foreign policy of aggression."
Marcus Garvey Way in the works 1/30/2008 SF Bay View: "In an effort to help reverse the decline of San Francisco's African-American population by recognizing its unique cultural and artistic identity, the Board of Supervisors has approved a resolution urging the Department of Public Works to rename Eddy Street between Laguna and Divisadero to Marcus Garvey Way as well as proclaim Aug. 17 Marcus Garvey Day in San Francisco. The resolution was unanimously approved on Nov. 26, 2007."
Truth was first US casualty in Iraq war: study 1/23/2008 AFP: "US President George W. Bush and his top officials ran roughshod over the truth in the run-up to the Iraq war lying a total of 935 times, a study released Wednesday found."
Civil Rights Movement Gets Real - St. Louis Mayor Booed Off MLK Platform 1/22/2008 Counterpunch: "Most of the audience felt it disgraced the memory of Martin Luther King for the mayor to be in the room. A few days before the annual rally Rev. Douglass Parham, Chair of the Concerned Clergy for the Betterment of St. Louis, requested that the officers of the MLK Day Committee uninvite the mayor due to his series of abuses against the Black community."
Jazz: For Whites Only? 1/15/2008 Color Lines: "A white girl growing up on the South Side of Chicago, I fell in love with jazz and enjoyed the mixed audiences at concerts and clubs. Sadly, I’ve gotten used to jazz venues serving far more white customers now than black ones. And I read with dismay of the recent Bay Area twin scandals: Yoshi’s CD, celebrating ten years of the premier Oakland jazz venue, included not one African American musician; then, Susan Muscarella, when confronted by the paucity of African American musicians she booked for the Berkeley jazz festival, responded “…I do choose quality and not ethnicity alone.” (“Jazz Fans Decry Exclusion,” Leslie Fulbright, June 1, 2007) Anyone who knows jazz knows it is an invention of African Americans and that they’ve made the innovations that continue to keep jazz the U.S.’s premier contribution to world arts."
An incomplete history: The legacy of 'Pitchfork Ben' Tillman 1/15/2008 The State, SC: "Words at the base of Ben “Pitchfork” Tillman’s statue, a prominent gathering place near the State House steps, describe Tillman as a great South Carolinian who worked for peoples’ rights. In reality, he was one of the leading white supremacists of his time who worked for years to deny African-Americans their rights. As S.C. governor, he advocated lynching black people. Later, he helped usher in the state’s Jim Crow era. Now, there’s a movement across the country to make historical markers accurate. South Carolina already has altered the wording at the base of U.S. Sen. Strom Thurmond’s State House statue, adding his black daughter to the list of his four white children. Some say adding a plaque to Tillman’s statue with more complete information could provide a more truthful description of his role."
Recession in the US 'has arrived' 1/8/2008 BBC
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